News / Asia

    Protesters Rally in China, Philippines Against S. China Sea Claim

    Protesters march towards the Chinese consulate during a rally in Manila's financial district of Makati, Philippines, May 11, 2012.
    Protesters march towards the Chinese consulate during a rally in Manila's financial district of Makati, Philippines, May 11, 2012.
    Activists opposed to China’s territorial claims in the South China Sea marched on the Chinese embassy in Manila Friday, further escalating the two countries’ territorial dispute.

    Huangyan Island is a small, rocky outcrop of land about 220 kilometers from the Philippine mainland of Luzon. Tensions in the region escalated on April 10 when the Philippines accused Chinese vessels of illegally fishing in Philippine territory.

    China has long claimed sovereignty over the islands, called the Scarborough Shoal in the Philippines.

    On Friday, foreign ministry spokesperson Hong Lei blamed the Philippines for rising tensions between the two countries. He said the Philippines side encouraged people to hold anti-China embassy protests, an action that complicates and magnifies the situation.  

    Hong said China pays great attention to the safety of Chinese nationals in the Philippines and has demanded the Philippines take effective measures to earnestly protect the safety of Chinese nationals and institutions in the Philippines.  

    The dispute has become an issue of national pride for some Chinese. Small groups of protesters marched in front of the Philippine embassy in Beijing, Friday.

    "I believe this Huayuan Island is an inseparable part of China.  I hope their governments don’t make this a cause for bad relations," one protester said.

    The protest in Manila was much larger than the one in Beijing. Hundreds of protesters marched in front of the Chinese embassy - many carrying placards that read:  “China Back Off.” 

    “The main objective of the protest action is to call the attention of the international community with regards to the Chinese government’s continuing and escalating intrusions in the Panatag [Scarborough] shoal area which we strongly believe is an integral part of the Philippine territory,” explained Emma Hizon, one of the organizers.

    The standoff escalated in April when China sent two maritime surveillance ships to prevent the Philippines from arresting Chinese fishermen off Huangyan Island. A Philippines coast guard vessel is currently facing off with the two Chinese ships.  

    Several countries claim parts of the South China Sea, including Vietnam, Brunei, Malaysia and Taiwan. The waterway is a strategically important trade route and a potentially rich source of oil and natural gas in the region. But Chinese officials have ramped up warnings in recent weeks about the territorial dispute, with state-backed newspapers warning of “small-scale war” if the Philippines does not back off.

    China warned its citizens in the Philippines to be cautious and the China International Travel Service, a large government-run travel agency, said it was postponing trips to the Philippines because of the protests. The standoff is also affecting trade between the two countries. In what may be a punitive action by the Chinese government, 1,200 containers of bananas from the Philippines are being held in customs because of what authorities say are "quarantine concerns".

    Meanwhile civic groups in the Philippines say they are planning more protests outside of Chinese missions in New York, Singapore and Rome.  


     

    You May Like

    Video Rubio Looks to Surge in New Hampshire

    Republican presidential candidate has moved into second place in several recent surveys and appears to be gaining ground on longtime frontrunner Donald Trump

    UN Calls for Global Ban on Female Genital Mutilation

    Recent UNICEF report finds at least 200 million girls and women alive today have undergone female genital mutilation in 30 countries

    UN Pilots New Peace Approach in CAR

    Approach launched in northern town of Kaga Bandoro, where former combatants of mainly Muslim Seleka armed group and Christian and animist anti-Balaka movement are being paid to do community work

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Wangchuk from: NYC
    May 18, 2012 10:09 AM
    When it comes to territory, the PRC is extremely hegemonistic. They invaded Tibet & East Turkestan in 1949-50. They invaded India in 1962 & still occupy Indian territory. They attacked Vietnam in 1979. Now the PRC claims all of the S. China Sea even those these waters are showed by many nations including Philippines & Vietnam. It's time Asian nations stoop up to the Middle Kingdom & say "Enough!"

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    German Artists to Memorialize Refugees With Life Jacket Exhibiti
    X
    Hamada Elsaram
    February 05, 2016 4:30 PM
    Sold in every kind of shop in some Turkish port towns, life jackets have become a symbol of the refugee crisis that brought a million people to Europe in 2015.  On the shores of Lesbos, Greece, German artists collect discarded life jackets as they prepare an art installation they plan to display in Germany.  For VOA, Hamada Elrasam has this report from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video German Artists to Memorialize Refugees With Life Jacket Exhibit

    Sold in every kind of shop in some Turkish port towns, life jackets have become a symbol of the refugee crisis that brought a million people to Europe in 2015.  On the shores of Lesbos, Greece, German artists collect discarded life jackets as they prepare an art installation they plan to display in Germany.  For VOA, Hamada Elrasam has this report from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video E-readers Help Ease Africa's Book Shortage

    Millions of people in Africa can't read, and there's a chronic shortage of books. A non-profit organization called Worldreader is trying to help change all that one e-reader at a time. VOA’s Deborah Block tells us about a girls' school in Nairobi, Kenya where Worldreader is making a difference.
    Video

    Video Genius Lets World Share Its Knowledge

    Inspired by crowdsourcing companies like Wikipedia, Genius allows anyone to edit anything on the web, using its web annotation tool
    Video

    Video Former Drug CEO Martin Shkreli Angers US Lawmakers

    A former U.S. pharmaceutical business executive has angered lawmakers by refusing to explain why he raised the price of a life-saving pill by 5,000 percent. Martin Shkreli was removed from a congressional hearing on Thursday after citing his Fifth Amendment right to stay silent. Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Super Bowl TV Commercials are Super Business for Advertisers

    The Super Bowl, the championship clash between the two top teams in American Football, is the most-watched sporting event of the year, and advertisers are lining up and paying big bucks to get their commercials on the air. In fact, the TV commercials during the Super Bowl have become one of the most anticipated and popular features of the event. VOA's Brian Allen has a sneak peek of what you can expect to see when the big game goes to commercial break, and the real entertainment begins.
    Video

    Video In Philippines, Mixed Feelings About Greater US Military Presence

    In the Philippines, some who will be directly affected by a recent Supreme Court decision clearing the way for more United States troop visits are having mixed reactions.  The increased rotations come at a time when the Philippines is trying to build up its military in the face of growing maritime assertiveness from China.  From Bahile, Palawan on the coast of the South China Sea, Simone Orendain has this story.
    Video

    Video Microcephaly's Connection to Zika: Guilty Until Proven Innocent

    The Zika virus rarely causes problems for the people who get it, but it seems to be having a devastating impact on babies whose mothers are infected with Zika. VOA's Carol Pearson has more.
    Video

    Video Solar Innovation Provides Cheap, Clean Energy to Kenya Residents

    In Kenya, a company called M-Kopa Solar is providing clean energy to more than 300,000 homes across East Africa by allowing customers to "pay-as-you-go" via their cell phones. As Lenny Ruvaga reports from Kangemi, customers pay a small deposit for a solar unit and then pay less than a dollar a day to get clean energy to light up their homes or businesses.
    Video

    Video Stunning Artworks Attract Record Crowds, Thanks to Social Media

    A new exhibit at the oldest art museum in America is shattering attendance records. Thousands of visitors are lining up to see nine giant works of art that have gotten a much-deserved shot of viral marketing. The 150-year-old Smithsonian American Art Museum has never had a response quite like this. VOA's Julie Taboh reports.
    Video

    Video Apprenticeships Put Americans on Path Back to Work

    Trying to get more people into the U.S. workforce, the Obama administration last year announced $175 million in grants towards apprenticeship programs. VOA White House correspondent Aru Pande went inside one training center outside of Washington that has gained national recognition for helping put people on the path to employment.
    Video

    Video New Material May Reduce Concussion Effects

    As the 2016 National Football League season reaches its summit at the Super Bowl this coming Sunday (2/7), scientists are trying to learn how to more effectively protect football players from dangerous and damaging concussions. Researchers at Cardiff and Cambridge Universities say their origami-based material may solve the problem. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Saudi Arabian Women's Sports Chip Away at Stereotypes

    Saudi Arabian female athletes say that sports are on the front line of busting traditions that quash women’s voices, both locally and internationally. In their hometown of Jeddah, a group of basketball players say that by connecting sports to health issues, they are encouraging women and girls to get out of their homes and participate in public life. VOA’s Heather Murdock reports.
    Video

    Video A Year Later, Fortunes Mixed for Syrians Forging New Lives in Berlin

    In April of last year, VOA followed the progress of six young Syrian refugees -- four brothers and their two friends -- as they made their way from Libya to Italy by boat, and eventually to Germany. Reporter Henry Ridgwell caught up with the refugees again in Berlin, as they struggle to forge new lives amid the turmoil of Europe's refugee crisis.
    Video

    Video Zika Virus May be Hard to Stop

    With the Zika virus spreading rapidly, the World Health Organization Monday declared Zika a global health emergency. As Alberto Pimienta reports, for many governments and experts, the worst is yet to come.